Montana Hunting & Fishing News February 2015



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FWP issues fish-consumption advisory below oil spill

image002BILLINGS — Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks has issued consumption advisory for fish caught in the Yellowstone River in the area of a Jan. 17, 2015, oil spill west of Glendive.

People who have caught fish in the Yellowstone River between the spill site, six miles upstream from Glendive, and the North Dakota state line should be cautious about consuming them.

This week FWP biologists started capturing fish below the oil spill site and sending them to a laboratory for testing. Biologists and game wardens also are asking anglers if they will donate fish from their catch for laboratory testing. Test results should be returned in the next two weeks and FWP will publish the data so fishermen can determine whether their catch is suitable for consumption.

Published research indicates that petroleum compounds can accumulate in fish for 40 or more days after a spill. FWP will continue to sample fish throughout the river to try to detect any accumulation. Petroleum compounds can also be passed on to fish through the food chain when micro-organisms, insects, worms, crustaceans and other aquatic animals absorb petroleum compounds then are eaten by fish.

The advisory was issued as a precaution, advising anglers to tend toward conservative decisions and prudent practice when it comes to the health effects of the oil spill.

In addition to paddlefish and endangered pallid sturgeon, this stretch of the Yellowstone River holds channel catfish, sauger, walleye, northern pike, bigmouth buffalo, black bullhead, black crappie, bluegill, blue sucker, brassy minnow, brook stickleback, burbot, cisco, common carp, creek chub, emerald shiner, fathead minnow, flathead chub, freshwater drum, goldeye, golden shiner, green sunfish, lake chub, largemouth bass, longnose dace, longnose sucker, mountain sucker, northern redbelly dace, plains minnow, plains killifish, pumpkinseed, rainbow smelt, river carpsucker, sand shiner, shorthead redhorse, shortnose gar, shovelnose sturgeon, sicklefin chub, smallmouth bass, smallmouth buffalo, spottail shiner, stonecat, sturgeon chub, western silvery minnow, white bass, white crappie, white sucker, yellow bullhead and yellow perch.

People with questions or who want to report contaminated fish or wildlife may call the Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks Region 7 office at 406-234-0900. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service also has set up a toll-free telephone number — 888-959-8351 – to report oil-covered wildlife.


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2015 Banquet

Date is Saturday February 7, 2015..  Happy hour 300p-530p   Dinner 545p  Elks Lodge, 934 Lewis Ave.. 2 bars, raffle prizes, silent and live auctions.
$25.00 per adult  Children 6-12 $10.00   age 5 and under free
Contact Greg Heil at 672-9601 for tickets


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Club Get Together & Ice Fishing Sunday

We are having a club get together Sunday 1/18/15. We will be going to Castle Rock Lake at Colstrip. We will have some cold cuts for sandwiches, will have a pot of chili,

if you have never ice fished before we will have people to help and some equipment.

If you would like to join us we will be heading out about 700am.

Call Becky at 672-8995 if interested in joining or need directions. We will leave from McDonald’s at Johnson Lane in Lockwood

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Game wardens looking for information on poached elk

image002BILLINGS — Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks game wardens are offering a reward for information about a bull elk that was killed illegally and left to waste east of Billings over the weekend of Jan. 10-11.

FWP game warden Courtney Tyree said elk was shot illegally along Fly Creek east of Billings.

FWP is offering a reward of as much as $1,000 for information leading to a conviction of the persons responsible for the illegal kill. Anyone with information about the crimes is encouraged to call Tyree at (406) 860-7814 or FWP’s 24-hour wildlife tip line at 1-800-TIP-MONT (800-847-6668).

The 1-800-TIP-MONT program is a toll-free number where people can report violations of fish, wildlife or park regulations. Callers may remain anonymous. It is similar to the well-known Crimestoppers program and offers rewards for information resulting in conviction of persons who abuse Montana’s natural, historic or cultural resources.



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Ice Fishing Diary January 2015

Ice Fishing Diary January 2015

1911666_911627812183674_7410384126950069125_nWell little wind blowing, holes drilled,lines out, and Clayton setting up his spearing shack..keep you posted…HAPPY NEW YEAR FROM ROCK CREEK MARINA!

Greg caught a pike. That was our first and only so far. Neil Wellnitz is ice fishing here as 1926778_910333642313091_2925764797497279584_n (1)well and he did catch a pike as well today. So a bit slow but what a fun day. It was 30 f not much wind and a beautiful day. Now having some beverages and have to go check our tip ups.

Well it was very slow yesterday on fishing but man the weather was nice. Fishing been slow so I tried casting into open water off the point but no luck. As of today we have 4 pike. We’ve set lines on the north shore. Open water in main lake so cautiously went out and about 12 inches of ice.. it has been about 1 10154291_910134875666301_7126973788675506092_ndegree..tonight snow and dipping below zero. This is our last night here and I have to say we’ve had a good time even if fishing slow. We’ve been dining with Bill, Rock Creek Marina owner, and Neil and Linda who work for Bill and live up at Rock Creek year around. This has been a good experience for me and I’m looking forward to doing more ice fishing!

From Becky’s Posts on Facebook.

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Clean Angling News – Holiday 2014

Clean Angling News

Holiday 2014
When Controlling Invasives Conflicts with other agendas

For the past few years I’ve been increasingly interested in the conflicts that can be created when invasive species control efforts intersect with other needs. Sometimes these needs are ecosystem related while other times they are purely social.

For example, there are increasing occurrences where invasive species control methods run afoul of the management needs for endangered species. The most common example of this is the ban on the use of  salt cedar bio-controls in order to protect the willow flycatcher. The intersection of the Endangered Species Act and invasive species is an area that is likely to have more conflict in the future.

There are also examples of where social pressures arise to reduce or eliminate certain types of invasive species control. While there are a number of examples of this I want to highlight the specific case of invasive mute swans in New York.

Mute swans were first introduced to the Hudson Valley in the late 1800’s and many believe the birds provide an elegance and beauty that should be preserved. However, the NY Dept. of Environmental Conservation strongly disagrees. They have labeled the bird as an invasive species, noting that the swans “can be aggressive toward people, displace native wildlife species, degrade water quality, threaten aviation and destroy submerged aquatic vegetation.” Consequently, in 2014 the DEC proposed a plan to eliminate the birds from the state by 2025.

This proposal set off a statewide debate over the fate of the invaders with state officials holding firm that the swans are unwanted invasives that must be controlled. In response, swan protection advocates convinced legislators to pass a bill that outlawed the removal of the invaders. Now the Governor has vetoed the bill.  Read More

Until recently, most invasive species management efforts have been widely supported by both the professional and public audiences but as we move forward we can expect to see more cases in which the desire to control an invasive must be balanced against other needs.

Previously Posted on Facebook

We review news stories on a daily basis and post stories of interest on Facebook as we find them. However, we know that many of you are not using Facebook so here are the links we posted during October on our Facebook pages.

******* A reminder to those who follow us on Facebook: Facebook is limiting number of people who receive our posts. If you have liked our Facebook page you may not be getting our posts in your news feed. The only way to make sure you are seeing our posts is to visit our page to see all of the content we publish.

Our Clean Angling Facebook page is where we post links that deal with fish, fishing, cleaning, boat inspections, and other issues of interest to anglers.

Confusion abounds as Minnesota prepares to institute a new invasive species test, sticker and fee program. Although the law says it is coming there are few details available and the public is grumbling

Invasive fish, native fish and the search for great fishing. This story from the Great Lakes should be of interest to all anglers

If you have ever dreamed about catching every trout species in the world you need to add one more to your list – a new trout species has been described in Turkey

Illegal fish introductions are a real problem. In Montana there is a new effort to teach everyone about the serious impacts that can result when non-native species are introduced

If you think hoisting a cold beer is the best way to end a day of fighting invasives you might want to check out this new brew – its made from invasives!

Wyoming reports that of the 40,000 boat inspections they conducted in 2014 about 2,000 were inspections of “high risk” boats and the State decontaminated 860 of them

On our Invasive Species Action Network Facebook page we post all types of invasive species news including stories about all types of invaders, policy issues and other items of interest.

A three-year study in the Great Lakes region shows that invasive faucet snails are widely distributed throughout the region. These snail can carry carry intestinal parasites that are deadly to native waterfowl

Hikers and other outdoor recreationists are often moving invasive species. Research spurred by a 6th grade student has shown that washing your clothes after hiking may not be enough

A new Oregon study shows that the state loses $83.5 million annually to invasive weeds.

Congratulations to customs inspectors in Philadelphia for discovering two new insect species before they were introduced to North America<

Montana Governor Steve Bullock has signed an executive order creating the Montana Invasive Species Council

Until recently there has been no effective treatment for a mussel invasion. However, new approaches are being developed that hold promise for future control options. Minnesota is testing one method in the seasonally appropriate Christmas Lake.

Sometimes it seems that we really need to do better. This case illustrates why it can be so difficult to ever try to quickly respond to a new invasion

Here is a new book that educates children about the problem of invasive pest insects

How an ecosystem responds to invasion is often quite interesting. Read about how a bird species has adapted to invasion by learning to use tools to help them feed on invasive snails.

Teaching children about invasive species is an important part of developing a concerned public. We recommend this new book for teachers that provides some great lessons and activities

Oregon is struggling to find the best way to deal with invasive turtles, including snapping turtles and red-eared sliders

New invaders are always a concern and the state of Michigan is looking ahead by adding 7 new species to it’s list of aquatic invasives<

Wisconsin’s Fox River connects Lake Winnebago with Green bay and a lock on the river has been closed to prevent the spread of invasives. Now comes a proposal to build a lift station to move boats over the lock

In Montana, the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes Natural Resources Department is working to raise awareness that feral cats are a serious invasive species problem

Australian officials are concerned about the potential impacts of iguanas if they should become established. They recently have objected to a HP advertising campaign featuring an escaped iguana

Earthworms are invasive species, a fact that surprises many. The Great Lakes Worm Watch is organizing citizens to help track their distribution

For 6 years the US Bureau of Reclamation has been field testing compounds to see if there are any effective anti-fouling coatings that will reduce mussel attachment. Here is their latest information

Our Forest Pest Fly Tying Project Facebook page provides information for anyone concerned about the spread of forest pest insects. Visit the page and join the conversation about the problem and our unique fly tying program.

Oak and apple trees as well as cranberry bushes are all threatened by winter moth and Maine officials are asking for the public to help look for this invasive pest.

Officials in Pennsylvania are concerned about the future of the official state tree as Hemlocks are the primary food for an invasive pest insect

As the emerald ash borer spreads across North America millions of dead trees present problems for homeowners and others.

Thousands canker disease is killing walnut trees across North America. It is caused by an invasive fungus that is being spread by the walnut twig beetle and the beetles are spread in firewood

Here is a new invasive pest for those of you who want a real fly tying challenge. The spotted lanternfly is in Pennsylvania and authorities are working to contain it before it spreads.

Emerald ash borers continue to spread and now they have been found in New York’s Westchester County.

Climate change will have significant impacts on invasive pests in our forests. Read how the Southern pine beetle is now threatening northern forests.

Holiday Issue 2014

  Happy holidays to all of our readers! This is the November/December “Holiday” issue of the Clean Angling News.
As winter sets in across the country many invasive species programs morph from being field based to managing all of the data collected during the year. This time of year is when program leaders assess their efforts and seek ways to improve their programs.
Looking back over the past few years I am struck by how effectively invasive species experts have adapted and improved their efforts. Just a few years ago boat inspections were a new thing and there were lots of different ideas about how to best protect our waters. Today there is an unprecedented amount of collaboration and cooperation among managers all working to try to create the most effective and least intrusive programs.
I am extremely grateful of the efforts these great folks are conducting and I hope they get the support and encouragement they need in the coming year.
I hope you will get in touch with me if you have questions or invasive species stories to share.
Happy Holidays!

Bob Wiltshire
Executive Director ISAN

The Clean Angling News is published monthly by the Invasive Species Action Network. Please send comments, questions and complaints to

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The Clean Angling News is regularly produced by the Invasive Species Action Network. If you have questions, suggestions or would like to learn more about invasive species please contact us:

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Montana Hunting and Fishing News January 2015

Click here to read January issue

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Banquet Tickets Now Available

Banquet tickets are available for sale.

Anyone who needs tickets please call Clayton Sorenson at 406-855-7236 or Greg Heil at 406-672-9601

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Deboning a Northern Pike

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